Welcome to Jester's Trek.
I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
You can follow along, if you want...

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

CSM8 Status report: Week nineteen

Minutes!  Writing minutes is about as much fun as PvE grinding, maybe about as much fun as structure grinding.



Well, nah.  It's not that bad.  But it is a very structured sort of writing that eats a lot of time and is technically demanding.  It's a bit like writing a book report, only you have to accurately report everything that every character says.  Fortunately, we've got the video recordings of most of the sessions.  Unfortunately, it's most and not all because of all the technical issues that we had at the summit.  I myself had to write the minutes for one session this past week where no video existed at all!  Fortunately, I kept really good notes in Iceland during the proceedings so I was able to reproduce what happened.

Anyway, the process of writing the minutes this time started with long back-and-forth chats with CCP Dolan about what we could and could not write about.  Out of what I call 24 sessions, four of them were flatly NDA'ed right at the outset so those get pushed back to the last set of minutes that gets published.  That's a pity because I'm really hip to write the minutes for one of those sessions, a project I'm really kind of excited about.

After that, we set up a list of the sessions that needed documenting and people started signing up for the sessions that interested them.  And then, unfortunately for several people who volunteered the process stopped cold right there.  I'm not naming names yet, but as of the time that I'm publishing this, only four of the fourteen CSM8 members have written one or more sessions, and only two -- Trebor Daehdoow and myself -- have written more than one.  Yes, I'm cracking the whip.  But no, I'm not ready to name names quite yet.  Fortunately, enough has been written at this point that we can send the first batch to Dolan for review, and hopefully from there to in front of your eyeballs soon.

Official meetings have started back up as well, with two this past week.  The first was a meeting about "project 1" that we were briefed on at the first day of the summit.  The CSM had significant concerns about one small part of this project and CCP Fozzie was on vacation during the summit itself.  So he graciously agreed to meet with us outside of the normal cycle to listen to our concerns and hash them out.  I think it's fair to say he did a great job of addressing those concerns and we're feeling a lot more comfortable with the plans for this project.  Overall, I think EVE players are gonna be really pleased with it and I can't wait to start writing about it.  "Project 1" has a chance of being a quite literal game-changer in a lot of ways.

That was Monday.  Thursday was the day for our regularly scheduled stake-holder meeting with Team Five-0.  Owing to another round of the Icelandic death flu going around, this one was sparsely attended.  Still, we covered a lot of ground, including some follow-up information about "project 1" from the Monday meeting and a couple of more minor items that Team Five-0 is also working on for winter.  Everything's going smoothly and the CSM members present were able to provide feedback on the various items being worked on.

Discussion then turned to EVE Vegas, which Fozzie is going to be attending with CCP Rise as well as other CCP'ers.  I can't remember if he let it slip here or at the SCL that same Saturday, but I think he managed to share a bit of information that will be the tipping point to get me to Vegas as well...

Other than the minutes and the meetings, normal CSM activities also continue.  We're up to five major Skype channels with CCP now, an informal chat channel, a PvE-focused channel, and open dialogs with three of the four feature teams (with the fourth one coming soon, we're told).  So kudos to Dolan there!  He's really hustling to get CCPers communicating with CSM members and vice versa.  Activity on the forums is also spinning up.  So, plenty for CSM members to do, no doubt about it!

Externally, Trebor did an interview with the Down the Pipe podcast and Ali Aras has resumed regular Space Hangouts.

EDIT (18/Sep/2013): Updated with the link of Trebor's interview.

The focus in the rest of the week is going to be getting more minutes sessions written and getting them cleared, then learning how these things get published.  Stay tuned!

17 comments:

  1. I am happy to sign an NDA and contribute eight to twelve hours a week if you need help typing, transcribing, editing, etc.

    Stop laughing, I am serious!

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  2. You're going to go to Eve Vegas - that's fantastic!! If you see 2 gorgeous and petite ladies, one blonde and the other a drop dead gorgeous red head, trying to get your attention and wearing "Ripard Teg for CSM9" T-Shirts come talk to us - we'll have a surprise for you:-) Thanks for the update!!

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    Replies
    1. *insert sound of Jesters GF/Wife buying plane tickets*

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  3. Good for Fozzie taking time to talk to you guys once he got back. On another note, I think CCP should conduct their CSM summits in such a way that there is no need for an NDA. If it needs to be NDA'ed then it shouldn't be dangled in front of the CSM. It entices the CSM to be semi-gagged cheerleaders for stuff that doesn't even exist yet. How can the CSM represent the players if they're told information that cannot be shared with... you know, the players?

    The NDA serves no purpose except for CCP's desire for free publicity on "wait 'til you see it, it's gonna be awesome!" features.

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    1. Your perception on what the point of having the CSM is inaccurate. They aren't Community Cheerleaders (isn't that Fozzie's job? :D). They are the catalyst between the company CCP and the player base of Eve. What is good from a "business" perspective, isn't always the best for end user gameplay and it is their job to point out these discrepancies.

      Due to how features aren't always the same at concept as they are when released, NDA prevents "firefighting" for CCP down the road due to rumors.

      Hope this helps!

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    2. Except, one of the primary purposes of the CSM is to give feedback about what CCP is working on. These things are going to be under NDA early on, and the best time for feedback is before a lot of the work is done and when parts of the project could be adjusted.

      You can't really announce things before they are closer to being ready for deployment because then you get years of development for something like Incara with huge expectations and little pay off. NDA topics presented to the CSM are a necessity, it is the only reason I vote, your version gives them no power whatsoever and reduces them to mere marketing.

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  4. Speaking as a player, I greatly value the time and effort all CSM8 members and CCP devs/reps are putting into the process of communication and working together for the betterment of the game.

    If it isn't NDA'd, are you able to say if the various unspecified projects are intended for release with this winters expansion, or are they part of the three year plan?

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    1. Two of the three projects are intended for winter. The third is set-up work for a follow-on expansion.

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    2. So we will heard about these in a week for winter announcement?

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  5. Project 1 - now you picked interested of all of us. It's such a heartless teasing:)

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    Replies
    1. Trebor is more evil than I am. He wanted to give the three projects we were briefed on misleading and cryptic code names.

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  6. Project 1 sounds exciting. Can you tell us a rough timeline for it? :)

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  7. Have any of the CSM discussed the Marauder changes with CCP lately?
    Haven't got any updates about them for a while and wondered if they were discussing them with you guys again after the fairly negative feedback about the second iteration.

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  8. The only thing people want to hear about is when will Dust die so CCP will start spending money on EVE again.

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  9. I really, really, really do appreciate what you do Ripard! I really could put a dozen more reallys or two in that sentence - thats how much I really appreciate it ;) Having all those insights into the work of the CSM is doing a really great deal of good.

    I think it prevents a lot of mudslinging as people aren't left to guess who is doing how much good. No need to figure out who's telling the truth and who is not after a situation got heated.

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  10. You have my vote if you decide to run for CSM again.

    many of the people on the CSM are just there to feel important, find out stuff early and bum a free trip to Iceland, as your problems with getting them to do any of the boring work shows.

    I don't know or care about your politics when it comes to areas of the game you push for, you have my vote because your communication is outstanding.

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